What I learned from using the iPhone 13 and the cheaper iPhone 12 together



The iPhone 13 series went on sale on 17 September. If you're an early adopter, you're probably
already familiar with it. On the other hand, there must be many people who are still thinking about
buying a new iPhone. If you're not familiar with the new iPhone 13, you may already be.

What has changed with the iPhone 12?
For those of you who haven't bought an iPhone in a while, let's start with a refresher.

The iPhone 12 series was released in 2020 and featured a major redesign of the device. They now
have flat sides, like those of the "iPhone 5s" era, and a new MagSafe feature on the back that can
magnetically hold peripherals such as a compatible charger or card slot. There was also the addition
of a 'mini' size variant, and the much talked about '5G' communication specification.

If you missed it last year, you can read this article to catch up with last year's information to some

>> What's new in the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro? A review of the design, size, camera and more

What's new in the iPhone 13?
The new features in iPhone 12 are basically the same as those in the iPhone 13 series. We've outlined
what features have been added and how they've changed in our breaking news article.

>> A quick review of the iPhone 13's key evolutionary changes from the iPhone 12

In this article, we will introduce our impressions of the iPhone 13 series based on the following

The design

Evolution of the camera
Evolution of the display
Other changes in the specifications

About the design: how much is the notch reduced?

One of the most noticeable design changes across the iPhone 13 range is the reduction of the notch
at the top of the display by around 20%.

The notch has always stood out when compared to many Android phones, so it's nice to see it
reduced in size while still having Face ID. We actually displayed the screen and compared the two,
and it definitely reduced the sense of presence.

iPhone 12 Pro (left) and iPhone 13 Pro (right)

However, the notch hasn't completely disappeared, and the UI design has already made the notch
unnoticeable in many situations, so if you've been using the X series or later models with Face ID, you
won't notice much of a difference.

In my case, when I put the iPhone 12 mini and 13 mini on top of each other, I just thought, "Oh, the
time display is a little bit bigger.

In the foreground is the iPhone 13 mini, with slightly larger numbers. By the way, this photo was
taken with the iPhone 13 Pro's telephoto camera under room lighting after sunset. As you'll see later,
it's quite beautiful and amazing, but there was still a bit of noise under these harsh conditions.

Another important change is that the parts around the camera are larger. In short, the peripherals of
the iPhone 12 series cannot be used in the iPhone 13 series.

Compare the rear cameras of the iPhone 12 Pro and 13 Pro. Not only the lens size, but also the size of
the whole unit is different, so the size of the camera hole in the case is different.

▲Comparison of the back camera of the iPhone 12/13. The new model has a larger camera and a
more angled layout. It looks like it will be difficult to use the same case for many products.

We didn't have all the colours on hand to compare, so our impression of the design is that it hasn't
changed that much. On the other hand, the lens on the back of the camera is much larger, which
makes the camera look even more impressive when you point it at you.

Antalya, Turkey – November 30, 2021: Back view of new iPhone 13 Pro smartphone and box

(2) Camera evolution: fun with telephoto and video
There has been a lot of evolution in the camera features.

In terms of hardware, the iPhone 13 series has a larger sensor size, which means more pixels per
sensor, which means brighter photos. The pixel size of the wide-angle camera is 1.7µm in the iPhone
13/13 mini and 1.9µm in the iPhone 13 Pro/Pro Max. In addition, Sensor-Shift Optical Image
Stabilization, which was only available on the top-of-the-line iPhone 12 Pro Max last year, is now
available on other models.

iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13

In terms of software processing, the Smart HDR function has been upgraded from '3' to '4',
optimising the skin tones of each person in a backlit scene (we didn't get a chance to test this).

There are four points that make a big difference to the experience of using these cameras.

The telephoto of the Pro series is amazing!
The "Photograph Style" is a different experience from the filters.
The night mode is so beautiful!
The "Cinematic Mode" is a fun way to create professional looking videos.

The telephoto of the Pro Series is amazing!

From left to right: iPhone 13 Pro (15x), iPhone 12 Pro (10x), iPhone 11 Pro (10x). You can see that
noise is clearly reduced with each new generation.

Firstly, the telephoto camera, which is only available on the Pro and Pro Max, has increased by 3x.
"It's a small change numerically, since the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max had 2x and 2.5x
respectively, but in practice, the software processing is incredible. There's very little noise at
maximum zoom. If you've ever thought, "I can't use the zoom on my phone", you might be

The "Photograph Style" is a different experience from filters

iPad mini taken in standard conditions using the iPhone 13 Pro

Using the iPhone 13 Pro, the iPad mini photographed with "Rich (warm)" selected in the Photograph
Style, with the red colour slightly more vivid. The true value of this feature is probably best seen in
landscape and portrait photos, but it's easy to see what's going on when you look at a simple subject
like this.

Then there's the new 'Photograph Style' feature, which, like LivePhotos, can be called up at the tap of
a button to quickly switch between a number of customised modes. From a user's point of view, it's
like a customisable filter.

You can shoot with the iPhone and take advantage of the raw colours as before, or if you want to
shoot with crisp colours that can be posted on social media immediately, you can use the graph style.

The night mode is absolutely beautiful!

(From left to right: iPhone 13 Pro, 12 Pro, and 11 Pro in night mode under an elevated train tracks at
dusk. 11 Pro is the only one with clearly different colours. ……

Enlargement of the bottom right corner (dark back part) of the previous image, showing that the
iPhone 13 Pro has less noise and no black crush.

In night mode, the image was much brighter, but with reduced noise. The time you have to hold the
camera has also been reduced by about a second in many situations, which also makes it seem easier
to use than before. This may be a modest evolution, but if you do a lot of shooting in dark places, this
is a point you should pay attention to.

Cinematic mode for professional-looking movies
The new Cinematic Mode has been added to the camera's video recording functions to enrich the
expression of depth. This is a feature that allows the iPhone to reproduce a technique often seen in
video productions, such as a gradual change in focus from the foreground to the background.

Left: iPhone 13 Pro in Cinematic Mode. On the right is normal video recording with the iPhone 12

Left: Distant view is blurred.

▲On the left, near and far views are blurred.

▲Left: blurred near view

At the time of the announcement, there was a lot of emphasis on using machine learning to
recognize faces, so we thought it would only work if there was a person present. I thought it would
only work if there were people in the scene, but it turned out to be pretty good even if you just took

a picture of the scenery. It's also fun to be able to re-edit your shots after you've taken them.
(Incidentally, the two Pro Series models also feature support for ProRes video recording, which is a
codec for professionals. (Incidentally, two models in the Pro series now support ProRes video
recording, a codec aimed at professionals, but not yet available).

(3) Display evolution: brighter and smoother
In terms of display specifications, there have been changes to the brightness of the display during
normal use, with the ability to go up to 1200 nits when watching HDR content remaining unchanged,
but the maximum brightness in standard use has been increased, as shown below.

<iPhone 12 and 12 mini
625 nits (standard) and 1200 nits (HDR)

<iPhone 13/13 mini
800 Nits (Standard) and 1200 Nits (HDR)

<iPhone 12 Pro/Pro Max
800 Nits (Standard) and 1200 Nits (HDR)
<iPhone 13 Pro/Pro Max
1000 Nits (Standard), 1200 Nits (HDR)

This means that the screen can be brighter in direct sunlight outdoors, making it easier to see. As for
the impression of using it, I thought that the difference from 800 to 1000 of the Pro series was not so
important because it was originally brighter at 800 Nits. On the other hand, the change from 625 to
800 on the 13/13 mini may be appreciated by some people depending on their operating style, such
as those who use it outdoors a lot (although the indoor experience is not that different).

▲The text on the Pro Series is easy to see even while scrolling slowly

The two models in the Pro series also support ProMotion technology, which increases the refresh
rate (rewriting speed) of the display. The refresh rate can vary from 10Hz to 120Hz, allowing for
smoother scrolling and other features while reducing excessive battery consumption.

With the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max, you can see the website while scrolling slowly, while with
the iPhone 11Pro and 12 Pro, there's a noticeable blur, so there's a solid difference.

On the other hand, when scrolling quickly, the text is not as clear on the new model as it is on the old
one. The difference in experience is minimal, so unless you're a stickler for game performance, I
don't think you need to worry about it.

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